A Travellerspoint blog

Our bikes

We finally got them!

After 3 long weeks, dreaming of our very own bikes, we finally got the liberating email from the bike store! It took a long trip to the Netherlands, and an extra hour of traffic jam, before we could finally see the beautiful Avaghon series:

avaghon.jpg

How do we like things:

  • Brooks conquest leather saddle
  • 4 Ortlieb saddlebags
  • 14-speed Rohloff gears are just the best invention for a bike after the wheel!!!
  • Deore XT group
  • Tubus carriers in front and back
  • Steel frame
  • Holder for regular 1.5 liter bottle
  • Ergon handlebars
  • Anatomic Bar ends
  • 40-17 gears instead of the standard 42-16
  • 15 degrees angle steering wheel
  • 26" Schwalbe Marathon XR tires
  • Magura HS-33 hydraulic brakes

They ride like lightweight bulldozers, unstoppable and fast. Till we buy a very decent lock, and we un-fancy them with lots of nasty stickers, they will be sleeping close to us in our living room...

Posted by amyandwim 11:02 Tagged preparation Comments (0)

Health

A miracle we're still alive

It seems funny in a way that we need so much medical protection and preparation just to travel. On one hand I feel a bit spoiled and over-concerned as I pack my bags with antibiotics, medications, and get vaccinations for every type of disease out there. However, I guess I should really just feel lucky because I have access to these things. Here's what we got:

Vaccinations:

  • Hepatitis A & B (3x)
  • Polio
  • Tetanus
  • Diphteria
  • Typhoid
  • Rabies (3x)
  • Cholera
  • Japanese Encephalitis (3x)

vaccination.jpg
I got 7 of these at once! Now I feel like a real hard-core traveler.

Medical Supply bag:

  • antibiotics
  • Malarone malaria pills
  • sterile injection needle
  • disinfectant
  • sterile compresses

Health insurance:
Although we didn't plan any severe accidents, we also got an extra health insurance. You know, just in case. We're covered for up to 75.000 Euro's each. That'll do in any country outside the USA.

Posted by amyandwim 23:40 Tagged preparation Comments (0)

Clothing

biking clothes

rain 16 °C

Living outside for a whole year, requires a whole lot of water proof, water resistant, water repellent and super breathing clothes.

  • There is of course the obligatory Gore-Tex jacket, in a nice and bright color to ensure good visibility for those crazy (we heard) Asian drivers.

jacket.jpg

  • Rainproof Marmot PreCip Full-Zip pants. To save some money, we didn't get the Gore-Tex ones. The Gore-Tex ones are probably way more breathable, but also three times the price!
  • Biking undies! Padding and ventilation for our buns! We're test driving a pair right now!

undies.jpg

  • We also got 2 merino wool short sleeve shirts and one merino wool long sleeve shirt, to keep us from smelling tooooo much.
  • Same thing goes for the feet: merino wool socks, to prevent smelly stinky feet!
  • Lastly, we bring our warm and comfy fleece sweathers to wear underneath the rainproof gear.

Posted by amyandwim 04:57 Tagged preparation Comments (0)

Camping material

It never seems to end

overcast 16 °C

What we thought would be a fun, light hearted shopping trip to the camping store, soon turned into a mind blowing financial situation. Who would have guessed living in a little cramped up tent, sleeping on the ground, and eating rice over a little burner would cost an arm and a leg! It seems that you can always get something just that much better and of course everyone recommends that you get the most waterproof, most windproof, highest ever quality things ever to exist. Really how much ventilation do your armpits need? It's as if it was completely impossible for people to go camping 10 years ago. How far do you go in pursuit of comfort? is the ultimate question.

To make a long story short, we found this hairy guy on the internet that gives advice, so we just bought everything that he recommended. This is what we got:

  • The MSR Velo tent, with an additional footprint. It stands up even without being anchored into the ground, has the possibility to put up only the inner tent, has two huge doors, is quite lightweight (4 kg), and of course it has enough space for our bikes (and our future dog)!

tent.jpg

  • The MSR Dragonfly liquid gas burner. It burns everything from white gas, to diesel, to kerosene, to regular gas... even whiskey!

burner.jpg

  • Wim also decided to buy a sleeping bag for fat women called the "big bertha". I don't really know what he's planning on doing in there.
  • A therm-a-rest large sleeping mats and matching pillows.
  • We also found these chair sleeves. You simply squeeze in your therm-a-rest sleeping mat, and it makes a nice chair!

chair.jpg

  • Another pretty cool thing is our folding dinner set. It is pretty much like origami: every dinner you just fold your own plates, bowls and cups. Ofter being used, they only take as much space as a sheet of paper.

dinner_set.jpg

So, thanks to the hairy internet guy, we close the chapter on camping materials.

Posted by amyandwim 23:44 Tagged preparation Comments (0)

Planning the route

How it came to be

rain 15 °C

We are Wim and Amy, two people with ambitious ideas and lots of free time. Wim just finished his PhD, I quit my job, and we were about to leave Belgium and move to New Mexico, USA. But with no kids, no house, no dog, or anything else in particular we decided that it was high time to go on an adventure.

weddinbg.jpg

So we decided to bike to Asia. The idea to go by bike came little by little. First is was the travel agent who informed us that it would cost 7.500 Euros per person to fly around in Asia. Then it was an inspiring book about bike travel. And then our really fun bike trip to Amsterdam. After all of this, we thought, what the hell, let's just bike to Asia! Despite our lack of any biking experience and our growing bellies, we are fully convinced that we can do this.

overview_small.png

This is the line we drew on the map. We will maybe, perhaps sort of follow it. If we do, we will be visiting former Yugoslavian countries, member states of the axis of evil, Pakistan, India, and SE Asia. Whatever happens, we hope to be able to entertain you over the next year with stories of courage, malaria, and diarrhea.

Posted by amyandwim 03:18 Tagged preparation Comments (0)

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